Poker Tournament Hero

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Clunky, Inflexible and Buggy"

    June 13, 2006  |   By Mr Tea


    This review was originally posted on
    Previous reviewer 'versiontrackerfree', who awarded this program five stars, is rather too easily pleased. It is in no way a 'great Macintosh product', and most emphatically does not 'rock'.

    PT Hero has potential, but that's all. The current release is extremely limited in what it can do and falls well short of being worth the asking price. Setting up blinds and antes is straightforward, but there's no way to automatically reduce the intervals between blind increases in the later stages of a tournament.

    The players and payouts setup dialog has fields for an astonishing 30 different prize levels, handy if you're running a major international tournament, but wildly over-specified for any kind of home game (and let's face it, that's where you'll find this app being used â?? not in casinos). And if you're involved in a series of home tourneys with a regular crowd, you might want to put actual players names in, and keep a record of overall progress. No way to do any of that with this baby.

    The option to change the audio alert to one of your own is welcome, because you're unlikely to want to keep the 'bing-bong' door chime provided. There is a facility for scheduling breaks, but they all have to be separated by the same number of blind increases which, again, may not be what is wanted by the end user.

    The sixth and final stage of setting up is the appearance/display setup dialog, which is probably the most disappointing and poorly-conceived aspect of PT Hero. There is no option to change the font used for the display. The only way to disable unwanted sections of the display is to move them to a position that's off the screen. There's a bottom line of constantly changing text giving various tournament stats that can't be moved at all â?? you're stuck with it whether you want it or not (which I don't â?? it's distracting, and there's no way to change the fairly useless selection of info displayed, aside from adding your own pointless line of text to the mix). Anyone who wants to save more than one set of tournament settings is out of luck - there's no way to do this - you have to manually reconfigure everything every time.

    Anyway... at last you're ready to click the 'start tournament' button and WHOA... the thing comes up full-screen, and although you can toggle this off, it will always start in full-screen mode. On my two-screen setup, when I tried running it on the second monitor it blacked out most of the main monitor and covered it with ugly graphic artefacts... very nasty indeed.

    Once the tournament is in progress, the main display is no more than a timer and reminder of what the blinds are. There's no convenient toolbar that allows changes in the number of rebuys or players to be entered â?? instead, you have to open the 'director's panel' to change the number of players remaining, and a further needlessly complex dialog to log each new rebuy and recalculate the prize pool.

    What I'd like to see alongside the timer is a list of named players, with two buttons beside each name â?? one for registering rebuys, one for clicking when knocked out of the tournament.

    Maybe PT Hero will be worth a look one day, but right now it feels more like a version 0.0.1 beta than a finished product. Don't part with your money.

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